How to overcome insecurities in a relationship
Feeling insecure often has to do with low self esteem and a negative inner dialogue. Part of dealing with insecurities in a relationship consists of working on yourself – identify yur strengths and know what you are worth. Tell yourself that whomever has your love is a very lucky person. See yourself as a prize. Half the battle is being true to yourself and liking yourself. This strong inner foundation can help you through the more tricky times in a relationship. Because this struggle is so internal and most of the time even independent of circumstances, it’s important to deal with our insecurities without distorting or dragging our partner into them. We can do this by taking two steps 1. Uncovering the real roots of our insecurity and 2. Challenging the inner critic that sabotages our relationship.
Stop thinking it is all about you
When we feel insecure we often think it is because we aren’t enough on some level. Consider the possibility that what you think is going on in the relationship actually has nothing to do with your perceived failings/flaws.
Communication is also key in order to counteract insecurities. You may very well have ‘picked up the wrong end of the stick’. When we are insecure, we tend to view things through our insecurity-filter and we are triggered by things that others who feel more secure would not even notice. Stop seeing things in black and white. Sometimes relationships feel less loving and less supportive – this is normal.
Stop being dependent on anyone but yourself
Be aware that you might be seeing problems where none exist – in other words, you may be making up stuff. Ask yourself, “Am I making things up in my head?”. Look for clear evidence to support your thinking and often you will find there isn’t anything clearly obvious. (Such as your partner clearly saying “I don’t love you and don’t want to be with you anymore”.
Give up the idea of the perfect relationship
It doesn’t exist. There are ups and downs and mood changes, moments of affection and closeness and moments of friction. These ups and downs are completely normal and expected in relationships.
Examine your expectations
You may have a pre-existing idea of how a relationship should be – let go a little. Self assurance comes from learning to accept uncertainty to a certain extent. GIve yourself reassurance rather than expecting it constantly from your partner. Being too needy and clingy can be off-putting. Learn to talk to yourself and remind yourself of all your good qualities.
Space is important
Have other interests beyond the relationship
Stop ‘mind reading’/making stuff up
Constantly wondering what your partner is thinking is a quick route to anxiety. If they say one thing, don’t automatically assume they mean something else or that they are hinting at something. If they say nothing don’t assume that their silence is significant, either.
Many people relax by not talking. Constantly wondering and asking what someone is thinking is a dead end because even if they do tell, will you believe them anyway?
‘Mind reading’ happens when we assume we know what someone is thinking when we don’t.
Focus on what is good
Insecure people assume a relationship is bad unless reassured otherwise. Secure people assume all is good in the relationship unless shown or proven otherwise. Let this be your default position too. No meaningful relationship will always work flawlessly all the time. Being too black and white about the quality and health of a relationship spells trouble. There will always be difficulties present, but you can still focus on the good. Insecure people constantly look for signs of what’s not working in their relationships. What you need to do is look for signs of what is working well.
Healthy happy relationships go through tough times too. Don’t hold back in relationships and give as much as you get. Try not to hold back and play games due to fear or insecurity. When you feel anxious, give it a little time and see whether you are just making things up or whether there is something to truly be concerned about. Stop and think before reacting. Learn to be self sufficient. If the anxiety continues despite looking for clear evidence (and finding none), examine your values and reasonable expectations and then communicate these to your partner. A loving partner will want you to be happy and fulfilled in a relationship and will care about your needs. Look at what they do AND say.